The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) was established 10 years ago to help disaster emergency management, response and provision of disaster assistance to victims.
But 10 years after, many Nigerians have not figured out the functions of NEMA due to ignorance.
Speaking to a group of journalists recently in an interactive session, the zonal coordinator of NEMA, south-south, Umesi Emenike said the Agency is coming to the centre stage by coordinating, sensitizing, educating and enlightening people by collaborating with other agencies, organisations, in respect to disaster cases.
Emenike noted that the Agency is poised to alleviate the pain and agony of victims of disaster not just from the area of providing relief measures but by assisting during emergency and providing solutions against disaster.
The rural coordinator revealed that earlier in the year, the Agency had warned that there would be flooding in most part of the country and warned that drainage facilities be cleared, but that warning was not adhered to which subsequently caused flooding in most of the states, including Rivers State.
He said the Agency has been working with humanitarian organisations and volunteers to form a kind of synergy that will help adhere government policy in the country.
Emenike who also dived into the recent amnesty granted by the militants, said NEMA may consider taking steps by looking into the plights of communities that were affected by militant activities in the Niger Delta region with a view to rehabilitating them.
He commended the federal government for the amnesty granted to the militants but pleaded that the communities affected during the crisis should be rehabilitated.
He blamed the public for not reporting disasters to the agency promptly pointing that, the act of not informing NEMA was always responsible why the Agency don’t respond to emergency timely.
Emenike urged that the Agency is fully funded and has all type of equipment in ease of rescue or emergency period.
According to him, During disaster or emergency period, NEMA has the statutory power to order any company to move its equipments to the disaster area immediately. “This is because we collaborate with all the Agencies and organisations in the country he added.
He noted that if crisis or accidents is re ported in time, NEMA is always up in meeting up the task.
The zonal coordinator disclosed that the Agency has commence training of new volunteers in Edo, Bayelsa, Delta, Cross River, Akwa Ibom and Rivers State on ways to manage emergency, response to crisis and general road safety. The training also comprises how to rescue people and victims from vehicle, in road accident.
He however announced that the zonal headquarter in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital will organise a summit for emergency management, simulation exercise at the airport, and other measures, towards saving lives and disasters from occurring.
Emenike further advised Nigerians to always ensure timely report of emergency and disaster related cases to enable them effectively respond to them.
Timely reports of emergency cases to appropriate authorities shall in no small measure enhance the performance of the relevant agencies in managing emergency cases he emphasised.
The NEMA boss recalled that the Agency which was established 10 years ago has succeeded in positioning itself well in some concept through the collaboration with relevant organisations and volunteer groups within and outside the country.
As the ember months set in, the Agency said it always organise workshop and public lectures allowing the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) to do the talking, sensitizing, educating the drivers and other road users of the need to be extremely careful while on the road.